Punknews.org's Jimmy Olsen imitator Mark Rowan grabbed the ear of Nic Newsham of Gatsbys American Dream and sat down with him for a chat recently. The two talked a bit about literature, tourmates and ice cream.
The two also talk about their upcoming followup to last year's Volcano.
There are a lot of books mentioned in the song writing, what are some of your favorite books?
If you get too much of us youâre going to die and all your arteries are going to get clogged.
Iâm a huge Charles Bukowski fan. Probably one of my favorite books is Ham on Rye. I like to read a lot of his poetry. Right now Iâve been kind of into biographies and autobiographies. I just read the Johnny Cash autobiography, which is awesome. I read the MÃ¶tley CrÃ¼e autobiography. Even if you donât like that band itâs the most entertaining read ever, itâs fucking insane. So, thatâs what Iâve been down with lately.
Where do you come up with the themes for the albums and songs, like Volcano?
Itâs just things you think about, everyday experiences. You can get inspired by reading books; you get inspired by hearing records, get inspired by seeing a movie. I think movies really inspire a lot of what we do.
Where did Volcano come from?
Volcano kind of spawned from Bobby [Darling, guitarist] saw a special or read a book on Pompeii and saw that as a metaphor for our lives. Then we all started to brainstorm and talk about these ideas, we all wrote lyrics in that way of thinking that weâre all evil inside of us and it could all come crashing down at any second. Thatâs kind of how that came.
Whatâs the concept or idea behind this tour "Screaming is for Babies"?
I think Starting Line named it that because itâs like the anti-screamo tour. None of the bands are really screamo on this tour; itâs just that we all sing. Nothing too deep.
Youâre going on a headlining tour soon with Horse the Band, how excited are you for that?
Totally excited. Honestly, the tour is cool because we can play as long as we want; we can play all the songs that we want. I think we kind of get spoiled with a tour like this, where half the venues are House of Blues. Now that weâre headlining, weâre going to go back to playing really small clubs. Itâs going to be awesome, but at the same time weâre going to be like, "What this club doesnât have a green room? I have no where to sit on my ass." Weâve been really spoiled this tour. I just talked to Minus the Bear today and they are on tour with Thursday, about mixing genres at showsâ¦what do you think about that? Especially with you guys going out with Horse the Band.
Well I think whatâs cool about a band like us, a band like Minus the Bear. We play pretty weird music; we can go out with the Starting Line and then go out with Horse the Band. Thatâs cool because weâre not pigeonholed, and weâre not just typecast into a certain genre. So we can do whatever we want. Itâs one of the nice things; itâs one of the good things about doing it the way weâve been doing it.
What is your most anticipated release of 2006?
It already came out. It just came out, Saves the Day. Best shit ever, that record is incredible. The first time I heard the whole record I was sitting next to Chris Conley, he played it for me. I was just like, "Fuck man." [laughs] "You know what you just did? This record changes everything. This record is just amazing." Iâm such a huge fan.
Is there any work on the next album yet?
Yeah, we did it on Christmas break. So yeah, itâs done.
When do you think itâll come out?
Maybe this summer. We havenât even gotten that far. Not even all the songs have titles. The artwork is just being worked on right now by a friend of mine. For the most part, it just hasnât been mixed or mastered. All the songs are done and recorded.
Is there a title for the album yet?
No, we havenât even gotten that far.
Weâre not pigeonholed, and weâre not just typecast into a certain genre. So we can do whatever we want.
If Gatsbyâs American Dream was a flavor of ice cream what would it consist of?
If we were a flavor of ice creamâ¦.thatâs such a cheesy answerâ¦I was going to say Neapolitan cause we have a little bit of everything. Thatâs so stupid, I donât know. Probably just the chocolaty-ist, most fatty thing, Gatsbyâs American Dream is just bad for you. [laughs] Itâs really bad for you, if you get too much of us youâre going to die and all your arteries are going to get clogged.
Cigarette butt ice cream. What is your American dream?
Kind of like the classic one. Iâd love to have a family and a white picket fence. Iâd love to be like 55-65, overweight, sitting in a recliner with my grandkids rolling around the ground. Thatâs awesome, thatâs it for me.
Thatâs it, anything else you want to say?
Buy the new Saves the Day, itâs amazing. Everyone go online and listen to this band called Weatherbox. Itâs the best shit youâll ever hear. I donât know if theyâll even come out and do anything, but itâs this kidâs demos right now. He filled in and played guitar for My American Heart for a couple months and then he recorded some demos, heâs so good. I think he plays everything, but the drums. Thereâs a song called "The Clearing", youâll love it.